Friendship with Pak at what cost?
There has been outrage over the killing of two Indian soldiers and the beheading of one of them by Pakistani army men at the LoC. I am appalled that there has been not a word from the president or the prime minister on this barbaric incident so far. I cannot understand how long it is going to take for our political class to realise that it is futile to extend a hand of friendship to a country that harbours terrorists and continues to stab us in the back at the least opportunity. Pakistan violates all ceasefire agreements, dares to cross the LoC, but we have not been able to give them a befitting reply. The Kargil conflict was an opportunity to get into Pakistan and destroy the terror camps once and for all, but our leadership chose to exercise restraint. Since then we’ve suffered the horrendous attack in Mumbai and the killings by infiltrators in Kashmir continues unabated. How much longer, Mr PM, must we suffer this?
—S Vijay, by email
Apropos “Bikram gives Pak a firing”, the general’s warning reflects the mood of the Indian people. India has worked through bilateral channels to normalise relations with Pakistan. But as the proverb goes, Pakistan shows off one set of smiling teeth at those meetings and another set of teeth that bite when it wills. Pakistan must realise that its jingoistic attitude jeopardises the relations between the two countries. While neither of the countries can afford a war today, Pakistan will be ill-advised to precipitate a confrontation.
—Jitendra Kothari, by email
Clearing hawkers, Shiv Sena’s duty
Apropos of “Sena blames Cong politicians”, I think that the Shiv Sena is crying foul only to attack the Congress. No, I am not about to support the Congress, because the issue is about the illegal hawkers. The municipal corporation is controlled by the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance and it is the responsibility of the civic body to act against encroachments and all illegal activities, which includes hawkers occupying footpaths. Hawkers operate illegally outside nearly every railway station, but hardly any action is taken to clear them from these public places. If the municipal corporation had taken necessary action, a police officer like Vasant Dhoble would not have faced unjustified criticism, and pedestrians would have walked easy.
—Akhil Thakur, by email
It is evident from the transfer of ACP Vasant Dhoble that our so-called janta sevak politicians are misusing their clout and interfering in areas they should not. Dhoble is an honest officer who is only doing his duty by acting against illegal hawkers who are causing inconvenience to the general public by trespassing on pavements. He would be a big asset in the road traffic department to instil road discipline in auto drivers, motorcycle riders and especially truck drivers. We need such honest police officers, not corrupt (vote-seeking) netas.
—John Anthony, by email
The shunting of a straightforward and duty-conscious police officer, carried out under political pressure, is not the first such case in Maharashtra. On earlier occasions, a number of upright and honest administrators and top cops had become the victims of the whims and fancies of the party in power. Some of the illustrious names that come to my mind are Dr U Chandrashekhar, Yadavrao Pawar, Arun Bhatia and GR Khairnar.
—Arun Malankar, Mumbai
It is amazes and disturbs me to read about the Rs18 crore of taxpayers’ money spent on the last trip by Pratibha Patil, when she was president. This is in addition to the Rs205 crore spent on 12 foreign visits covering 22 countries during her five years as president. We have had mixed examples of presidents like Rajaji, the first Indian governor general who was meticulous about his expenses in office and some others who were more liberal. But present-day leaders do not seem to care about the drain on the public exchequer on account of their lavish ways. There should be some steps taken to prune such expenditure by our leaders and public representatives, when so many welfare programmes and projects are not implemented due to a lack of funds.
—VS Ganeshan, Bangalore
Justice is blind
Apropos of “Lady Injustice”, the writer has expressed her disappointment over the deep-rooted biases against women among politicians, religious leaders and the police, who suggest that woman are to blame in some way for the sexual violence committed against them. Shockingly, this bias exists also in the judiciary which has is many instances let off rapists with light punishments, by shifting the blame on the women. There is no denying that our judicial system has been deficient in delivering justice. Is it not true that there are lawyers who can manage judges to allow rapists and murders walk away free? The systemic defects must be corrected now. At the same time we need to deal with our patriarchal and misogynistic culture, which completes the defilement of the woman by proposing that she marry the rapist as the solution.
—DR Kukal, Chandigarh
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Friendship with Pak at what cost?
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